Science Expo

The 2017 Science Expo event will be held from March 13-17 of 2017, our public event will be held Wednesday, March 15th from 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Flyer for the 2017 Science Expo. Información en Español.

Plan to attend the 12th annual family SCIENCE EXPO at the Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences in Incline Village. Many hands-on science investigations and experiments will be available for children ages 6—12 and their families. The 2017 Science Expo's activities focus on EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCES and activities will include fossil digs, streambed models, earthquakes and plate tectonics, volcanos, phases of the moons, fabric of space-time, cooking up comets, and more. The Science Expo fosters student excitement and interest in science. Learn with your child or become a volunteer (Volunteer Flyer Available)!

If you are a teacher interested in bringing your class to North Lake Tahoe Science Expo please fill out this survey request.

Take a journey into the natural world with an inflatable planetarium show, Habitat Earth, brought to you by the Nevada Challenger Center! Dive beneath San Francisco Bay, travel through the roots of a tree, dip into an ant hill, swim with otters, and explore Earth from outer space to learn about how our relationship with animals, plants, and other life forms make up the many ecosystems on earth. The show is 22 minutes long; $3 in advance and $4 at the door (cash only please). Show times are 3:00 p.m., 3:45 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 5:15 p.m., and 6:00 p.m. If you are planning to come to the public event and would like to see the Nevada Challenger Center's planetarium show click on one of the time slots above and RSVP for everybody in your party!

2016 Physical Sciences

Students discover the colored shadows that result from light mixing

2016 Physical Sciences

2016 marked TERC's first ever South Lake Tahoe (SLT) Science Expo! This event was held at the Lake Tahoe Community College (1 College Way, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150) from March 30, 2016 - April 1, 2016. Dates for the 2017 Science Expo in South Lake Tahoe have still yet to be determined. There will be a SLT public event (en español) at this location. To schedule your students' visit to the SLT Science Expo please contact Beth Quandt ( or 530-543-2371 ext. 1454).

About Science Expo

The annual Science Expo event is designed to increase student excitement and interest in science through interactive, hands-on activities, games and demonstrations. Science Expo is hosted by UC Davis TERC, with support from the Rotary Club of Tahoe-Incline, the Rotary Club of Tahoe City, and Soroptomist International of South Lake Tahoe. Science Expo includes eight days (5 days in North Lake Tahoe and 3 days in South Lake Tahoe) of hands-on science activities for third-, fourth-, and fifth-grade students from the greater Lake Tahoe and Truckee Region and an evening public event for families. Interest in the event has grown tremendously.

Student groups come for a two-hour session and interact with 30-40 hands-on science activities within the theme of Earth and Space Science (2017), Life Science (2018), and Physical Science (2019). Themes are on a three year rotation to ensure that local students who come every year during grades 3 through 5 will experience different activities each year.

2015 Life Sciences

Student admires a bearded dragon after learning about its evolutionary path

2015 Life Sciences and Health Fair

UC Davis staff, AmeriCorps members, Youth Science Institute (high school students) participants, and volunteers share experiments with the younger students in the community. Other regional partners including Sierra Watershed Education Partnerships, Tahoe Institute for Natural Science, Incline Village General Improvement District, Washoe County School District,  Lake Tahoe Unified School District, U.S. Forest Service, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service offer activities, experiments, or demonstrations. Coffee is provided for volunteers by I.V. Coffee Lab.

Students from Kings Beach, Incline Village, Tahoe City, Truckee and South Lake Tahoe will attend during the school days and there is also an evening public open house on Wednesday evening from 4 - 6 p.m. providing fun for the entire family and a great educational experience for kids. Free ice-cream is provided during the public event by Susie Scoops of Incline Village.

Teachers should contact Heather Segale at 775-881-7562 or to book their time slot for the 2016 Science Expo. The Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences facility is located at 291 Country Club Drive in Incline Village (between Tahoe Boulevard/SR 28 and Lakeshore) and provides the perfect setting including use of teaching laboratories, a 3-D visualization theater, and other educational tools.

Comments from visiting students and teachers:

  • “The students left with so many discoveries, insights, and questions which has left them on further explorations. Your team is amazing!" (Jessica, Creekside Charter)
  • “We're so lucky to have this great resource in our community!” (Patricia Mills, Tahoe Lake Elementary)
  • "All excellent! I want to compliment the quality of the stations and presenters!" (Kathee Hansen, Tahoe Lake Elementary)
  • "I had so much fun being a scientist!" (Julie Otis, Kings Beach Elementary)
  • "We debriefed almost a week later and many [students] retained information they learned and/or were able to recall significant facts when reviewing their passports." (Susan Earnest, Bijou Community School)
  • "I enjoyed learning about our brains, how they work, and how the cells all play a different part in your body." (Kings Beach Elementary 3rd grader)
  • "My favorite part was the lungs, reptiles, and germs." (Creekside Charter 3rd grader)
  • "My favorite part was the brain and getting to see and feel them. You Rock. I loved it a lot!" (Creekside Charter 3rd grader)
  • “I learned a lot about science, so much that my brain is sore. Just kidding, but really, if my brain could not grow it would be full.” (Summer)
  • “I learned in ice that when matter changes from a solid directly into a gas it is called sublimation.”
  • “I enjoyed the experience and the magic of science. It was really awesome!” (Jessica)
  • “I really felt like a scientist and a nerd at the same time... I had a lot of fun.” (Damen)
  • “That night I dreamed about being a scientist and being the engineer of the fastest car. That reminds me... I'm a scientist can't you see, the cosmos is my lab for discovery, growing plants, checking out the stars, and I'm the engineer of the fastest cars... Yeah!” (Mckenna)
  • “I can’t wait until next year. Thanks again for making last Wednesday so much fun.”
  • “I really appreciate you letting us come. I enjoyed all of the fun science. I learned how science is fun and exciting. I hope I can come back next year.” (Mckayla)

Teacher Materials (2017 - Earth and Space Science)

Teacher Materials (2016 - Physical Science)

Teacher Materials (2015 - Health and Life Science)

2014 Earth and Space Sciences

Student learns how a change in pressure can cause a candle to "magically" rise

2014 Earth and Space Sciences